31

I'm looking for screen recording software that supports:

  • dynamic zooming of the page
  • captures mouse movements
  • allows captions to be overlaid
  • stop/continue recording
  • sound recording
  • saves as standard video MPEG.

What software might suit these requirements?

9

CamStudio seems to fit your description. The only missing feature is that you can't save as MPEG, only AVI, but the video output can easily be converted.

... can also add high-quality, anti-aliased (no jagged edges) screen captions to your recordings in seconds ... you can choose to use custom cursors, to record the whole screen or just a section of it ...

It's free, too!

  • 4
    Yes it's free, but in Windows 7 it asked to install several 3rd party programs; it's really easy to click Accept thinking they're part of the installation. (It didn't do this in Windows Server 2008.) – twasbrillig Sep 25 '14 at 21:46
  • Version 2.7.2 (Oct 2013) didn't ask me anything about 3rd party software, and I see none installed. Camstudio complains however about a missing MSVCR100.DLL, for which I need to to install the Microsoft Visual C++ 2010 Redistributable Package (32 bit version, 64 bit version) – Jan Doggen Oct 29 '14 at 16:22
  • To be more precise: you need the 32-bit version of the Microsoft Visual C++ 2010 Redistributable Package (the 'x86' executable). CamStudio won't work with the 64-bit version. – Jan Doggen Oct 30 '14 at 16:15
23

I'd recommend ActivePresenter. You record your screencast first, and some of your features are added afterwards. Going through your list of requirements:

✔ Dynamic zooming of the page

There's a feature called "Zoom & Pan" (see YouTube explanation) where you can select an area of the recording and have the final video zoom in to that. Alternatively you can also use "spotlight" that moves around on the video, looks like this:

ActivePresenter spotlight

✔ Captures mouse movements

It's optional, and you can also do things like highlighting the cursor. Here's a snapshot of the related settings:

ActivePresenter cursor settings

✔ Allows captions to be overlaid

Both text boxes (incl. bold, italic, underline, strike, colors, bg-color) and speech bubbles. Looks like this in edit mode:

ActivePresenter captions

✔ Stop/continue recording

Works, but at times I did notice audio recording getting slightly out of synch with the video, and had to adjust that in edit mode. Here's a screenshot of the toolbar overlay:

ActivePresenter toolbar

✔ Sound recording

It's in there (optionally). As mentioned above, pausing a recording did throw audio slightly out of synch for me once or twice. Here are the settings:

ActivePresenter audio

✔ Saves as standard video MPEG

When exporting you have a decent range of options, including MP4 format (as well as AVI, WMV and WebM). See the settings:

ActivePresenter exporting


I've used Camstudio and a combination of Fraps + Sony Vegas before for similar purposes. For regular screencasts I'd recommend ActivePresenter though, because it has many features yet has a friendly learning curve. Only two problems were stability with one particular version (was fixed in an update a week later) and some audio-synch issues when pausing recordings.

There's a free version (which I used) as well as a standard and professional edition (which I haven't tried).

  • 1
    This program is terrific, thank you! Very powerful and not difficult to use. This program will help our offshore automation teams to better illustrate (literally) what their video captures are demonstrating. I wish I could upvote this post more than once. – twasbrillig Sep 25 '14 at 21:56
  • +1 for thoroughness and images – IronManMark20 May 15 '15 at 1:14
  • How about learning curve? – Green Mar 7 '17 at 20:18
  • @Green Pretty okay. I got productive nearly instantly, as did my less tech-savy colleagues at the time. Relatively speaking, I think CamStudio might be easier as it's less feature rich, but it's certainly easier than Sony Vegas and Adobe Premiere. – Jeroen Mar 7 '17 at 21:50
  • Four years later and I still regularly fall back on this for simple screen recordings. – Jeroen Jun 14 '18 at 8:40
4

Camtasia gives you the tools you need to record on-screen activity, edit and enhance your content, and share in high-quality to viewers anywhere.

Recording Features

Full Screen, Region, Web Camera, DV Camera, Microphone Audio, System Audio, Voice Narration, Pause Recording, Restore Cursor Location After Pause, ScreenDraw, Add Markers, Add in Editor, Capture Keyboard Input, PowerPoint Add-in, Auto adds markers at each slide, Presets, Recently Recorded Areas, Lock to Application

Editing

Edit and your videos with Camtasia’s editor, ready-to-use themes, animated backgrounds, graphics, callouts, Export Project as Zip, Video Effects, Audio Effects, Cursor Effects, Direct Manipulation of Media on Preview Area (Canvas), Add Markers

Export

Produce interactive videos with clickable links, tables of contents, search, and more. Share videos with Youtube. Multiple profiles for exporting files.

Here is a quick table to see exactly what it can do as a comparison chart.

1

For the sake of answering the title of the question, I'd add RecordIt to the collection. It's extremely simple to use and free. What's best, it immediately uploads your recording and gives you a short-link. Thus, when I needed to share what I was doing with the customer support, it took me literally a couple of minutes from finding it using Google to submitting my support request with the link to screen recording.

1

For Windows now I using ShareX. Free Open Source screenshot and screencast recording App.

It also contain simple image editind and annotation and automatic uploader to image hosting, but I not using this features.

There no advanced screencast features, like hotkey show, mouse click show, etc. Just h264 mp4 of screen or window.

0

I agree with others that Camtasia is what you want for Windows, but it is not free. However, Jing which is also made by the same company Techsmith IS FREE and does the same job and the only limitation is a time limit.

-2

In my company we do presentations and need to record the screen however every presenter is using their own laptop so it is a lot of hassle to install a screen capture program on their computer and make sure they remember to start the recording.

I ended up just purchasing a video capture device that sits in the middle of the connection to the tv screen we use for presentation.

The box copies the video signal to my laptop where it get recorded. It is much less hassle this way when you need a solution where you have many computers to be used for presentation.

For a single use case with just one computer this would be a bit overkill.

  • 2
    Does it support zooming? Sound? Captions? All are requirements expressed in the question. – Nicolas Raoul Jul 15 '15 at 3:39
  • It is video intercept hardware so anything running through the cable to the presentation screen is captured. If the hardware is an hdmi cable it captures sound from that. If you run a zooming program on your screen during the presentation it captures that. – OrangeKing89 Jul 15 '15 at 13:19
-2

If you just need to record and already have it VLC video player has a method to record the screen.

It is not the focus of the software though so it not very flexible and does not meet the requirements asked for in the question but if you have it already installed and just need a way to record the screen it works without having to figure out what program to use.

Instructions:

How-to Geek

PCTonic

  • 1
    The original question had a list of requirements (dynamic zooming of the page...) could mention how/if this software meets them? – Travis Jul 14 '15 at 16:15
  • I have expanded the answer a bit but since there was already an accepted answer I was not thinking about the specific requirements of the question but more about a general reference answer for screen capture programs. – OrangeKing89 Jul 14 '15 at 18:43

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